Xbox One Policy Reversal: Microsoft Drops Several Planned Features

Daniel McCall - Author

Aug. 23 2017, Updated 2:29 a.m. ET

Today’s stunning announcement from Microsoft that its policies regarding used games and DRM on the Xbox One have effectively been reversed has been met with slightly mixed reception from consumers, but the majority of fans can agree that it’s at the very least a step in the right direction.

However, the Xbox One policy changes apparently didn’t come without a few sacrifices.

Speaking in an interview with Polygon, Marc Whitten, corporate vice president of Microsoft’s Xbox division, admitted that consumer reception of Microsoft’s original policies was very poor – but Whitten says that the company was waiting to tell its “complete story” before making any decisions.

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“We knew our complete story was partially told at the Xbox One unveil and partially told at E3,” Whitten told the site. “We wanted to put our story out there and show the great games we have coming. We did that and people gave us a ton of feedback.”

Whitten went on to say that in order to make these policy changes, several features intended to make use of the console’s used game DRM in a relatively good way had to be cut; for example, you will no longer be able to share your game with up to 10 family members.

Additionally, Whitten said that with the old system, you would have been able to play all of your games on another console by simply logging into your account, regardless of whether your games were retail or digital copies. In other words, the original system made it so that discs would no longer be required after the initial installation.

That doesn’t mean that Microsoft is going all the way back to how things were on the Xbox 360, however. Whitten pointed out that all games will be available digitally day-and-date with retail releases, meaning those who want to abandon discs entirely will still be able to do so.

“While we are adding in the ability to use physical discs, we still believe in the power of a digital and cloud-powered future played out at launch and rolled out over time,” Whitten said. “You are going to see us invest a ton in all of the ways digital builds experiences.”


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